The planned protests for February 12 in Iran did not materialize. It is not clear whether they were foiled or, more likely, the focus changed to Monday, February 14. In recent days, it seemed Iranians forgot entirely about the 12th and started talking about the 14th, so it’s possible the date was switched.
The Iranian opposition has asked for permission to rally in support of the Tunisian and Egyptian uprisings, which the regime had endorsed. The government has declined, further exposing its hypocrisy.
The Green Movement is planning to make its presence known in a major way on Monday. Over 43,000 people have joined one Facebook group supporting the rally. March routes in 35 cities have been announced.
The regime must also be particularly worried because the unrest could result in a worker’s strike, which I’ve argued could be the straw that breaks the camel’s back. A trucker union has endorsed the protest, as has a group of gold merchants, the Association of Former Majiles Deputies and the Association of Teachers and Scholars in Qom.
The regime knows its coming and is preparing. Karroubi is on house arrest and several of his relatives and those of Mousavi have been arrested. Arrests are being reported all around the country.
The Wall Street Journal says people are communicating about the rally by ringing on doorbells and writing on pieces of paper, stop signs and currency. It also had this insightful paragraph:
Since uprisings swept across the Middle East last month, Iran’s government has taken extraordinary measures to suppress dissent. It has executed one person every nine hours since Jan. 1, breaking the per- capita world record, human rights groups say. In January alone, Iran executed 87 people, the state media reported. That one-month tally is higher than the total annual executions in 2005, the year President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad came to power.